Damion Reid was born June 16th 1979 in West Covina, California a city east of Los Angeles. He is the son of a well respected bassist and astute operatic singer and teacher. By the age of three, Damion was already playing in church. It was around the age of twelve that Damion began being mentored by the world-renowned drummer Billy Higgins. During these formative years Billy’s spirit for life and music was deeply seeded in Damion’s fertile mind. Seeing Damion’s ability to grasp the music both, analytically and conceptually it wasn’t long before Billy invited him to be apart of his drum collective. As he began to mature musically he found himself frequenting Billy’s club “The World Stage,” learning and playing with the likes of Billy Childs, George Bohanon, and Oscar Brashear.
As Damion continued to cultivate his love for music through his high school years, he managed school life with professional obligations. Damion graduated High School and made the move to Boston, Massachusetts New England Conservatory of Music. It was while in Boston between the years of 1998 and 1999 that he received the prestigious Alan Dawson scholarship. He then was accepted into the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz at the University of Southern California. Soon finding himself trekking to New York City to attend The New School. He then began performing and touring alongside Greg Osby, Terence Blanchard, Robert Glasper, Cassandra Wilson, Bruce Hornsby, Jacky Terrasson, Ravi Coltrane, Reggie Workman, Marcus Belgrave, Angie Stone, Robert Hurst, Angelique Kidjo, Meshell Ndegeocello, Jason Moran, Mark Shim, Dianne Reeves, Mark Turner, Lauryn Hill and many others. Damion Reid is currently playing with Apex (Bunky Green, Rudresh Mahanthappa, Jason Moran and Francois Moutin) and Samdhi (Rudresh Mahanthappa, David Gilmore, Rich Brown and Anantha Krishnan.) Damion is also playing in various projects led by guitarist Miles Okazaki and a Steve Lehman, Rudresh Mahanthappa co-led project entitled Dual Identity.